20 November 2017

Kenya: Kebs Tightens Used Car Import Rules

Importers of second-hand motor vehicles will no longer have a three-month grace period after the expiry of the deadline set by Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) in a bid to enforce the eight-year age rule.

This means that all certificates of roadworthiness for vehicles whose year of first registration is 2010 will only be valid up to December 31, 2017.

Importers must therefore ensure that all vehicles with such certificates arrive at the port of entry by the same date.

Under the rule by Kebs, dealers will be expected to complete import arrangements for used motor vehicles whose year of first registration is 2010 by the end of next month.

"This is not the first time that we are doing this. We are simply reminding motor vehicle importers to move fast and ensure inspection by end of November to allow for shipment in December to avoid roll over cases that have been experienced before," said Kebs managing director Charles Ongwae.

Mr Ongwae said Kebs has witnessed significant compliance by importers on the eight-year rule.

"This means that motor vehicles owned by residents, diplomatic staff and the general public registered in January 2011 will only be allowed in the country as from January 2018," he said.

Imported vehicles must pass safety and mechanical inspection, must be right-hand drive and must be less than eight years old. This is aimed at reducing the risk associated with substandard vehicles entering the Kenyan market are safe for use.

But Mr Charles Munyori from the Kenya Auto Bazaar Association (Kaba) said that implementing the age limit regulation is impossible because Kenya allows vehicles with no age limit from neighbouring countries such as Tanzania to enter the country.

He said that a law should be enacted at the regional level to govern the age limit of vehicles.

"It is high time countries in the East African Community agrees on a harmonised age limit. Unfortunately, EAC has been dropping this proposal arguing that Kenya is a mature economy with citizens who can afford better cars," said Mr Munyori.


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